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Literary festivals are one of Britain's growth industries. Jeremy, with a bit of help from the Almighty, is good at them

By Jeremy Clarke   December 1998

One day last summer I did nothing except sit in the garden and read a book called The Faces of Hemingway by Denis Brian. Brian had the simple idea of interviewing everyone still alive who had known Hemingway and then transcribing the result. It sounds boring, but I was riveted by it.

The great question which seemed to exercise Papa’s friends and relations was: at what point did he begin to lose his marbles? Some of those interviewed said that he never really got over being blown up by a trench mortar during the first world war, and that his…

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